Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Not green

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We wake up each morning to the sight of a green light floating towards us while a little voice says, "It's green!" Eli has a clock that glows green when it's late enough to come out of his room for anything besides potty trips, freaky nightmares, injuries, fires, and kidnapping attempts. It's called the OK to Wake clock, and it is awesome. Eli thought it was pretty cool, too, for about a week. But one morning around 5:45 am, the jig was up. He was on to us. His little feet brought him down the hall and into our bed.

I rolled over and opened my eyes just enough to read my alarm clock. "Eli, was your clock green?" I asked, knowing there was no way it was. "Yes," he said. "Are you sure?" I asked. "Yes," he said, emphatically. I asked him to bring the clock to me, and as he went to retrieve it from his bedside table, I found myself wondering if the clock had malfunctioned or if he had accidentally reset it somehow. A minute later, Eli arrived back in my room holding something that was glowing indeed. But it was not green, and it was not a clock. He had found an orange light-up toy in his room and thought that he may as well give it a shot.  'Maybe Mom is too sleepy to discern colors,' he may have thought. "It's green," he said. "That's not green," I replied. And we carried on that way until I decided this was the stupidest argument I had ever had and put him back in his bed. So now I wake up to a floating, glowing green orb carried by a little boy who is proving to me that his clock is indeed green.

Events such as this may have inspired the photo below.  He wanted me to make a word, and I did my best with the letters that were in the tub.


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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Sunflower festival at the farm

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A few weeks ago, my mom came down for a visit, and we went to a local farm for their Sunflower Festival. Lauren attended a farm camp there this summer and absolutely loved it. She was so excited to go back to 'her farm'.

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First up, we had to visit the animals. Lauren's favorite were the goats. She loves to feed them and pet them. Eli had an unfortunate run in for this guy, whose version of snuggling looked a lot like head butts to the gut. Poor Eli was traumatized.

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So we left Lauren and Isaac to the goats, and went off to see these stinky guys. We laughed so hard when this third pig tried to join the pile-on!

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Next up....the sunflowers. A giant field of sunflowers.

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They could have gotten lost in there for hours!

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Chucking pumpkins! Lauren and Isaac hit a scarecrow in a field. Impressive!

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Eli, a natural cowboy.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Dancing memories

This summer was busy, wonderful, and full. Many memories were made, and we are now getting into our school year rhythm. Something that I think we all needed. Now if I could only reinforce my own bedtime as well as I do the kids' bedtime!

Dance like it's January 2011 from Sarah Smith on Vimeo.

I haven't got the time to write a proper post, but I wanted to share this video. In my quest to organize my long-neglected media files on the computer, I stumbled across this goodie from January 2011. Lauren was 4 and Eli was 1. The Eli circle-and-clap dance has been resurrected.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Funnies

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It's been a while since I posted anything. Not that there was a lack of anything going on, of course! My energies have been pulled elsewhere. But I wanted to stop in and tell a few funny kid things.

Lauren went to a farm camp the first week of summer. It was a great experience for her, and she learned so much. She became friends with the animals on the farm and did so many fun things. At the end of the week, she told us, "I'm just so much happier outside!" Isaac looked at me and said, "She's your kid." Amen, my sister. The farm had chickens...some for laying eggs and others for eating. We spotted some prepared chickens in the farm store refrigerator, and Isaac told Lauren, "There are some chickens." To which Lauren replied, "You mean chicken is made out of chickens?" I know she knows this, but the way she said it (probably having just spent some time around chickens) made it so funny!

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Lauren was playing with some plastic jungle animals and dinosaurs. They were "talking" to each other, and the dinosaurs started taunting the jungle animals. The jungle animals weren't having any of it and said (through Lauren), "Well, at least I'm not extinct.

Eli says more funny things than I can count. Whenever he's trying to get out of something, he tells me, "It's too early." It doesn't even apply in most cases, but he still says it. He picks up on everything Lauren says and does, and they have gotten into some serious sibling squabbles. He knows how to push her buttons in that way that only siblings can do. He can still be such a sweetie, and he has mastered the art of bedtime stalling. His most successful tactic is when he asks to "thnuggle just a little bit." Who could possible resist that??

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Here's to a fantastic summer ahead.

(Also...I'll get around to changing that banner to read 'summer' eventually!)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Friday, April 20, 2012

Six going on sixteen

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Lauren's birthday was last week, and I realize that it's the first time I haven't written her a loving, sappy birthday note on her birthday. The truth is that life is kind of busy and two kids with birthdays in the same month that now have friend parties on top of family parties = a new level of insanity added to the regular level of insanity that is our life. But it doesn't take away the fact that she is still pretty flipping awesome in my book. She's wicked smart and whips through chapter books by herself in no time. When Isaac and I have driven somewhere separately, she always rides with Isaac so he 'won't be sad and lonely'. It's really sweet. And it's this same level of empathy that also feeds into her anxiety-prone brain. She'll watch a show about someone getting hurt and then spend all night worrying about getting hurt and then she'll end up in our bed. She still watches out for her brother (when he's not bugging her) and they like to snuggle on the couch when they watch movies. It's a happy sight until someone starts kicking the other one or invades their space or accuses the other one of farting. Then comes the whining and the tears. My brother and I fought like crazy growing up and I hear the same is true on Isaac's side. Right now, our parents are reading this and rubbing their palms together while chanting, "The day has come. Revenge is mine!"

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Being the little kid, Eli has put up with a lot of Lauren's crap for a long time. But now, he's older, smarter and more articulate. And his wit is proving to be a fair match for his brainy sister. About a week ago, we were riding home from school when Lauren suffered some sort of injustice like a bump making her marker skip on the page and oh, the whining was epic. I don't even remember the particulars of the injustice, because she seems to suffer them all of the time. And wouldn't you know, they are mostly my fault. Why, just the other day, I made her tip over her bike from 10 feet away, because I told her to turn around. I have that sort of power. Anyhow, Eli had apparently had enough of her angst, because he turned to her and said, "Lauren, you're a turd." Now, a good mom would have probably scolded him for saying such a thing. But instead I just stifled my laughter, stared straight ahead and congratulated myself for not high-fiving him in front of her. Because, guys, she was totally being a turd! And then the other day, we were on the couch watching a show together. Lauren was having a particularly gassy night and the 'excuse me's coming from her corner were constant. Eli turned to me and said, "It smells like Lauren pooped in here." Oh dear, the inappropriate laughter that escaped from my face! It could not be helped.

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To add to the birthday excitement, Lauren lost her first tooth last week. While were out having her birthday dinner, she discovered a loose tooth. As the week progressed, it became a dangling stomach-churning thing to behold. She played with it constantly. From what I hear, her friends at school even tried to help her get it out (before the teacher stopped her). She would open her mouth and it would sit a good quarter-inch behind the rest of her teeth, and it was gag-inducing. On Saturday, I had had enough, so I asked her to push it back just to see how far back into her mouth it could go. We were driving in the car on the way to a birthday party, and I heard her say, "Where is it?" She had pushed it on out of her mouth and it landed on her shirt. And she was so excited! Her demeanor immediately changed from nervous to pumped. The tooth fairy was coming! I took that teeny tiny tooth with its bloody root and stuck it in my wallet so we wouldn't lose it. She put some pressure on her gum with a tissue, and I gave her a mirror so she could check out her new smile. And she loved it. We pulled in beside Isaac and Eli in the parking lot, and she flashed her new grin. I rushed home and whipped up a tooth fairy pillow while Eli napped and presented it to her when she came home from the party. She ran upstairs and stuck her tooth in it. I had to go to an event that night, but Isaac told me that as she went to bed, she said, "I hope the tooth fairy comes and that it's not a mommy or a daddy." In the morning, we waited anxiously for her to wake up. She came darting in running on her tip-toes shouting, "She came!" She hadn't even seen what the tooth fairy brought her, because she was too excited. Five gold dollar coins. The tooth fairy is pretty generous with those first teeth. It made her birthday week even more exciting. The next day, we threw a very girly birthday tea party for Lauren and about a dozen of her friends at a cute place called The Enchanted Village. It was estrogen-overload with pink everywhere, fairies, dress-up, cookies and cupcakes. For some reason, the usually boisterous girls were feeling even more so that day. They had to be RIGHT NEXT TO Lauren at all times, getting the same color wands and things as her. Lauren handled it well, but I felt a little sorry for the more reticent girls. And for our very nice party hostess who probably had to head home, take off that hot pink boa and pour herself a stiff drink.

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So Lauren, I know one day you will read this. In fact, I really hope you do. It's just a moment in time, and I beg you to read all the previous entries here. The ones where I brag and boast and gush. Because I feel all of those things just the same. And I always will. Even when you tell me that I'm boring or wasting your time. Even when we have power struggles over bedtime or trying new foods. Even when you ask me to leave you alone or go away. I remember those days when it was you clinging to me instead of Eli. I remember all those you and me times at the park. I remember every single milestone. All of those spelling tests with their 100% scores (every single one!) that I stick on the microwave will be in a box one day for you open. Along with your journal, your art, and your poems. All of those lovely things that came from you. These little challenges that you have right now feel tough. I know that...I really do. And you may not know it, but I'm trying to help you get ready for the really difficult challenges in life. Because they're coming. And they come when you least expect it when you're a grown up. You're going to be great. I know it with all of my soul, and the thought of getting to know you as a woman makes my heart flutter. Even then, I'll be here for you to help you through. Even if you don't want me to be, I'll be here. Always and with all of my heart, for you. Happy birthday, Lo.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Officially spring

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It's here! (Although...was winter actually here? So glad I bought those snow boots and snow pants for the kids.) Things really bloomed during the past week. It started with the daffodils, then we spotted the cherry blossoms. Over the weekend, the pear trees that line our street erupted in white puffs. And the forsythia made its appearance shortly thereafter.

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We've been spending as much time as possible outside. Lots of walks up to the lake to feed the ducks (and those pesky geese). The males and females are pairing off, and we can't wait to see ducklings wandering about.

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The kids and I set out one night on a long walk, and it has become our new nightly ritual. Sometimes they bring books to read in the jogger. Other times, they will take pictures from their seats...it's really interesting to see what they notice from their perspective. Every dog that crosses our path gets a portrait, that's for sure! One of our walks took us to a nearby park just as the sun set. I love seeing Lauren get braver and braver each year on the playground.

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Bubbles are one of Eli's favorite things. He gets so excited about them!

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Lauren is spending some quality time on the swing. She's able to start herself from the get-go now. She was so excited that she shared this as her 'joy' at church last week.

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While Lauren is swinging, Eli can be found climbing and sliding and pretending to drive a boat on the play set.

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In other words...we're having absolutely no fun at all. :)

Their trees

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Isaac's parents gave us some trees to plant last year...one for each of the kids. Lauren was so thrilled to see the first blossoms appear on her cherry tree. It has bloomed even more now, and it's really beautiful. The tree is supposed to bloom twice a year, so we'll get to enjoy it again this year.

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Of course, Eli wanted to get a picture in front of his Japanese Maple. It is just getting pointy little buds on it. As soon as he over their, he noticed some bees buzzing around, hence his stance. He's still a little traumatized by his wasp bite last summer!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

This is the awesomest day in the world



Lauren learned to swing by herself yesterday. She had tried to learn last year, but the pieces just fell into place today. She was so proud of herself and spent a good 30 minutes straight swinging. She declared it 'the awesomest day in the world'.

Friday, March 9, 2012

The elbow



Eli started dancing at a restaurant last night. The video features his signature move, 'the elbow'.